The signs were there right from the start. Could a relaunched Boo.com, under new ownership and a new focus, ever succeed given its infamous past?
No, is the short answer.
The idea was to create a content-heavy site with social features such as reviews and sharing, search and destination activity listings.
Given WRI’s Midas Touch in other areas, there was always a reasonable chance that a rejuvenated Boo.com might succeed.Â But the legacy – and some say, curse – of the original Boo.com was always going to hang over the newer site.
Lest the digital world forgets, Boo.com was one of the darlings of the UK dot-com boom of the late-1990s, selling fashion gear over the web and attracting reams of attention for its Swedish founders.
It famously went bust after spending an eye-watering $135 million of venture capital in just 18 months and collapsed just six months after its official launch.
It was widely considered one of the worst dot-com disasters of the period.
So the odds were stacked against the new, travel-focused Boo.com from the off, despite the domain names new owner and completely different strategy.
Given the fuss when WRI relaunched Boo.com in 2007, its not surprising that its recent closure was marked with similar fanfare – in fact, WRI confirms that Boo.com ceased to exist two months ago.
An official says the company wanted to “channel its resources” into its existing brands and the new BedandBreakfastWorld site, thus why the axe quietly fell on Boo.com in October last year.
“WRIâ€™s analysis of online travel consumption shows that there is a greater propensity for consumer to engage with websites that offer, not only user reviews, but also a means to process and complete a secure booking.
“WRIâ€™s goal is to continue to meet the ever-changing needs of the budget conscious traveler and to emulate the phenomenal success of Hostelworld.com in the growing B&B market.”